Suspected burglar found hiding in residence

A man was arrested and booked in Seneca County Jail after he was found hiding in a home’s closet Sunday.

Matthew E. Lands, 20, of Tiffin, was charged with burglary, a second-degree felony, said Deputy Denny Wilkinson of Seneca County Sheriff’s Office. Lands was being held in Seneca County Jail without bond Sunday.

“He was not invited. He helped himself in,” Wilkinson said.

According to a Seneca County Sheriff’s Office report, a person reported an intruder in the home at 241 W. Crestview Lane at 6:27 a.m. Sunday.

Wilkinson said a woman living in the residence reported the burglary in progress, and the two adults and two children who were home at the time had barricaded themselves in a bedroom.

Wilkinson said the woman’s husband had been sleeping on the couch. When he woke up, he got a glimpse of the person and thought the person had left.

Deputies responded, searched and cleared the home, and started processing the scene. Wilkinson said he heard the woman yelling and a dog barking, and Lands was found hiding in a tall and narrow linen closet in a bedroom.

“(He) had himself stuffed in there,” he said.

Wilkinson said Lands, the boyfriend of the residents’ daughter, was familiar with the property.

“There was no forced entry,” he said.

Wilkinson said a BB air pistol was located in Lands’ vehicle, which was parked down the block from the residence. Lands, he said, tried stealing a laptop computer and two cell phones and also had their daughter’s iPod. The keys to the homeowner’s car and credit cards were found on Lands.

“He was after drugs,” Wilkinson said.

Lands is to appear in Tiffin Municipal Court today and could face a fine of up to $15,000 and eight years in prison, Wilkinson said.

“With all of us working together, we put something together,” he said.